Tensions are high between the U.S. and Iran right now. There was the Iranian attack on a Japanese tanker, an ally of America. Photos and video of the strike show Iranian Guard members removing a missile that did not explode upon impact from the hull of the ship. Presumably they did this so the attack could not be traced back to Iran. Guess the Iranians forgot about our satellite technology.
But that’s not the only thing that is causing tensions to spike and worries about war between our countries to proliferate. On Monday it was reported that Iran would surpass the uranium stockpile limit it set in the nuclear deal the Obama administration signed. Reports said the limit would be surpassed within the next 10 days.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani (pictured above) has already warned Europe it needs a new nuclear deal to be in place by July 7 or they would increase their enrichment of uranium. Atomic energy spokesman for Iran Behrouz Kamalvandi put that statement in perspective when he said if Iran were to increase our enrichment numbers by 20%, “that’s just a step away from weapons-grade levels.”
Leaders of the Middle Eastern nation are boldly talking up the amount of uranium they have and the amount they intend to obtain in the near future. According to ZeroHedge, “The Iranian government announced on Monday that it was set to breach the cap on enriched uranium, unless Europe finds a way to trade with Iran, or otherwise fulfill its financial obligations made under the deal.”
These actions and statement by Iran seem to show how willing the Islamic state is to provoke conflict.
In response, the Pentagon announced it would be sending additional American troops over to the region to bolster security of American interests in the face of a growing Iranian threat. The UK is also sending a contingent of 100 Royal Marines to the region, purportedly to stabilize the situation.
According to RT, spokesperson for the Iranian atomic energy agency, Behrouz Kamalvandi, has said the country has already increased its stockpile of nuclear material. Kamalvandi is reported to have said, “From today, the countdown has begun, and by June 27, our uranium production will have surpassed 300kg.”
ZeroHedge writes, “Last month, Tehran announced that it would partially suspend its commitments under the JCPOA, giving the EU 60 days to reaffirm its commitment to the deal.” Speaking to reporters on Monday, Kamalvandi criticized the EU, saying that the bloc “either do not want to do something, or they just don’t have the ability to do it,” but he added that “Europeans still have time to save the deal.”
The European Union’s top diplomat, Federica Mogherini said, “At the moment, as of today, Iran is still technically compliant and we strongly hope, encourage and expect that Iran continues to comply.”
Mogherini said that the next report on the issue would come from the United Nation’s nuclear watchdog program, the International Atomic Energy Agency.
Nuclear weapons experts have explained that only 20% enrichment is necessary for nuclear material to achieve 90% of the standard effectiveness of the types of nuclear weapons possessed by the United States and Russia.
Benjamin Netanyahu has said that the international community needs to re-impose sanctions on Iran to prevent it from obtaining weapons-grade uranium. “In any case,” he said, “Israel will not allow Iran to obtain nuclear weapons.”
The AP writes, “Meanwhile, a series of attacks have targeted oil tankers, and the U.S. blames Iranian mines. Iranian-backed Houthi rebels have launched missile attacks on Saudi Arabia. The Pentagon released new photos to bolster its case that Iran is responsible for the attacks.”
President Trump has done everything he can to keep us out of a war with Iran, despite stern statements of condemnation against Iran. So far, Trump has used his military options with great reservation in spite of intense pressure to do more.
On May 16th, the New York Times printed an article entitled, “Trump Tells Pentagon Chief He Does Not Want War With Iran.”
Iranian foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif has refused to take meetings with Trump.
With tensions rising and both sides unwilling to back down, war with Iran is not out of the question and may only be a matter of time.